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Health Care Sector Update for 01/30/2015: ICPT,QTNT,DNDNQ, VRX


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Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ -1.22%

PZE -1.02%

MRK +0.04%

ABT -1.34%

AMGN -1.78%

Health care stocks were lower, with the NYSE Health Care Sector Index falling 1.0% and shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 dropping 0.6% as a group.

In company news, Intercept Pharma ( ICPT ) rallied Friday after the drug-maker received Breakthrough Therapy Designation from FDA for its experimental obeticholic acid treatment for fatty liver disease.

Drugs qualifying for breakthrough designation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration typically must show substantial improvement on a clinically significant endpoint compared with other currently available therapies.

The company submitted efficacy and safety data from a pair of placebo-controlled Phase II trials, including testing of obeticholic acid in 64 patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis to measure its impact on insulin sensitivity. Another trial involving 283 participants sought to measure the drug's efficacy on liver histology and fibrosis.

ICPT shares were up more than 21% at $207.33 apiece, easing from an earlier session high at $210.00 a share. The stock has traded within a 52-week range of $128.50 to $484.99 a share, slipping more than 42% over the past 12 months.

In other sector news,

(+) QTNT, (+22.4%) Forms exclusive commercial partnership with Ortho clinical Diagnostics to market its MosaiQ test platform for the global transfusion diagnostics markets.

(-) DNDNQ, (-13.6%) Receives $296 mln "stalking-horse" bid for world-wide rights for its Provenge cancer vaccine from Valeant Pharmaceuticals ( VRX ). The bankrupt company extended deadline for additonal bids through Feb. 10.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities
Referenced Symbols: ICPT ,




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